Monday, April 5, 2010

Mean, Mean, Monkey Man

On my way home from work this evening, I was stopped at a red traffic signal at the Grand Exit of Highway 40 (yes, I'm still calling it that).  Mine is the fifth car in line in the left turn lane.  A man is walking along the side of the roadway with a hand-written sign in his hands (most likely asking for money, but he was too far away from me to read what the sign actually said). 

After a couple of moments, the light turns green and the first three cars pull into the intersection to make the left onto Grand.  The car in front of mine remains stopped.  The driver appears to be assiduously fixated on the pedestrian with the sign and is paying little heed to the traffic around him.  I lightly tap on my horn to notify him of the signal change and he explodes into wild gesticulation. Instantaneously, both of his hands shoot into the air and he waves them above his head like an out-of-control monkey.  Repeatedly he jabs his fingers at the pedestrian, as though to signal to me that the man is holding a gun and he couldn't possibly pull forward for fear of his very life.

In response, the pedestrian calmly steps back onto the curb, well out of the way of traffic (although, to be sure, the driver in front of me could have easily circumvented the pedestrian with room to spare, had he not been so intent on surveying the pedestrian's every move).  I, in turn, burst out into laughter at the driver's crazed antics, as he continues to gesture at me - this time in a more menacing manner.

I find little else more amusing than inappropriate road rage.  I seriously consider this to be the height of absurd behavior.  Now, I understand getting upset at someone abruptly cutting you off or doing something dangerous.  I can also comprehend frustration with drivers who are completely inept and slowing the flow of traffic.  I've been known to curse under my breath at these sorts of wayward drivers.  However, I simply can not fathom why people freak the fuck out at little things like what I've described above, as though they don't have any real problems in life.

Secretly, I suspect that they are too cowardly to deal with their anger in their personal spheres and so they misdirect it at other drivers.  Oh, you are so big and bad for threatening me from the safety of your vehicle.  I am really, really afraid of you, now, angry little person.  Please, please don't stick your middle finger up at me.  Stop or I'm going to burst into tears at your frustrated displays of immaturity.

My god, get a therapist.  Consider decaff.  Shit, consider weed or better yet:  public transport.